Millennium Post

Unilever-HUL deal among largest Indian in-bound M&As

Unilever Plc's $ 5.4 billion bid for a 23 per cent stake in Hindustan Unilever is the largest Asia Pacific cross border inbound merger and acquisition (M&A) deal so far this year and is the fifth largest India Inbound M&A transaction on record till date.

According to global deal tracking firm Dealogic, Unilever is the the fifth largest India inbound M&A transaction on record, the largest being, Vodafone's 67 per cent stake acquisition in the Hutchison-Essar Ltd (HEL) from Hong Kong- based Hutchison Group in 2007.

Moreover, the Unilever deal is the second largest Asia (ex-Japan) targeted transaction in 2013, behind CP All plc's $6.6-billion takeover bid for Siam Makro pcl, announced on 23 April.

On 30 April, Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant Unilever Plc said that it will spend $5.4 billion (over Rs 29,380 crore) to hike stake in its Indian arm Hindustan Unilever to 75 per cent through an open offer.

Unilever will pay Rs 600 a share in an open offer to raise its stake in Hindustan Unilever to 75 per cent from the current 52.48 per cent.

Some of the major inbound deals — wherein a foreign company or its subsidiary had acquired an Indian entity — in the past, includes BP's $ 9 billion acquisition of Reliance Industries' oil & gas assets and the acquisition of Cairn India by NRI billionaire Anil Agarwal led-Vedanta Resources for over $8 billion.

The United Kingdom has been one of the top acquirers of Indian assets over the years as another most prominent inbound deal also involved a UK entity -- Vodafone Group.

Other key inbound transactions include Japanese drug major Daiichi Sankyo Company's acquisition of majority stake in Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd for up to $4.6 billion and US- based Abbott's acquisition of Piramal Healthcare's domestic formulation business for $3.72 billion.
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